Languid and soulful, the debut album from New Jersey singer SZA is an immersive dreamscape, book-ended poignantly with her mother’s musings on the subject of control. The obvious touchstone is the meandering R&B of Frank Ocean – these are delicious slow jams with delicate yet powerful vocals and intimate insights into femininity, self-esteem and youth. On Normal Girl, SZA laments that she isn’t one, while on Pretty Little Birds she candidly considers shaving her legs. The presence of big names like Travis Scott and Kendrick Lamar is exciting, but ultimately they’re just complementing SZA’s moment: and undoubtedly, Ctrl is a special moment.
SZA: Control review – dreamy and delicious insights into vulnerability